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Cutting damp, lush lawns

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by mowmasteruk, Sep 17, 2005.

  1. mowmasteruk

    mowmasteruk LawnSite Member
    Posts: 119

    Here in England with our famous unpredictable weather, the grass can often grow lush, so it is normal practice to bag the cuttings. Also we cannot always wait for a dry day to come along so we have to try to keep cutting when its wet. My company favours solid catchers made from reinforced plastic type materials rather than fabric catchers as we find the latter do not fill so well when the grass is damp. Due to the size and type of property we service we tend to mainly use Etesia 18 inch or 21 inch walk behinds - Etesias are manufactured in Europe specifically for collecting damp, lush grass.
    Do you have these conditions in parts of North America and what types or makes of mower and catcher do you guys use to collect in the wet?
  2. turf9

    turf9 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 234

    I am in the same situation as you over here honda is the big name in 21 ers.I find as long as the bag is clean and there is good airflow through it it usually fills right up.As long as your don't go full speed the chute does not plug up ( kind of :rolleyes: ) one those frequent crappy days in the spring and fall.
  3. Envy Lawn Service

    Envy Lawn Service LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,062

    It's good to finally see someone here that is from England. I've always been curious about how europeans do lawn care. You guys have a lot of mower types over there that we do not have here. I see a lot of direct collection mowers, out front mowers and 21" mowers that seem rather strange, ect.

    But anyways, yes, up until this month, it's been very wet and humid for the past 3 cutting seasons where I am. I have yet to bag the first clipping because of it though. I run big mowers that can handle the wet conditions.
  4. mowmasteruk

    mowmasteruk LawnSite Member
    Posts: 119

    Yes, we have a Honda HRX536HX 21" hydrostatic bagger, it is probably the best machine with a fabric catcher that we've had, but when it rains we have to leave it in the shed - only our Etesias work well in the rain. Our Honda has done about six seasons and although it looks as if it's seen service in Baghdad it is still a very serviceable machine and is the preferred machine for our top crew when conditions are right for it.
    Our current fleet of Etesias are equipped with Briggs & Stratton 5 h.p. Quantum engines, but they tend to shake themselves to bits after one season, plus we've had problems with the fuel tanks chafing on the deck structures causing them to leak and requiring immediate replacement. Trouble is that Etesia have tried to squeeze a large lump of engine into a tight space designed originally to take a Kawazaki 4.5 h.p. So our next years intake will have the Honda 5.5 hp option which fits the deck better and is an altogether better build quality in our opinion, if rather more expensive. Sorry if I have digressed.
  5. khutch

    khutch LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 495

    Any pics of those mowers? 5.5 seems so underpowered...
    If I have to I cut & discharge, let the grass dry a bit while edging and blowing, the bag 1/2" higher. Seems to cut the amount of clippings bagged by at least 50%. Second pass is of course much faster. Some of the clippings go back to the soil and it is a lot less to haul away!
  6. mowmasteruk

    mowmasteruk LawnSite Member
    Posts: 119

    Sorry I have no pictures that I can post but if you go to the Etesia website www.etesia.com and click on the ENGLISH button at the bottom of the page after it loads there is alot of info on them there. I think they might not be available in North America yet, but I will contact them and tell them it's a market they should be looking at. They are made in France.
    We also let the grass fly in very wet conditions then make a second pass to collect - obviously it takes longer to do that but sometimes it makes the difference between finishing the job and giving up.
  7. mowmasteruk

    mowmasteruk LawnSite Member
    Posts: 119

    Can you tell me more about your mowers, I'm just interested. Many American makes are available in UK such as Scag, Hustler, Toro, etc.
  8. Envy Lawn Service

    Envy Lawn Service LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,062

    Sorry it has taken so long to get back to you.
    I'm trying to get caught up here.

    Anyways, yeah sure I can... what would you like to know?
  9. battags

    battags LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 607

    Those Etisia's look pretty neat. Too bad the closest dealer to me is on the island of Martinique! I don't think I can fit that in my luggage on my next cruise....


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